Wings Face Sky in Game 1 of WNBA Playoffs
Chicago, Illinois - For the opening round of the 2021 WNBA Playoffs, the Dallas Wings (7th seed) will travel to Chicago to take on the Chicago Sky (6th seed) at Wintrust Arena on Thursday, September 23rd at 7 p.m. CT / 8 p.m. ET on ESPN2.
Dallas has faced Chicago three times this season, winning twice, once at College Park Center in Arlington and once at Wintrust Arena. Wings guard Arike Ogunbowale leads the team, averaging 18.3 points against Chicago this season and has averaged 21.8 points per game in the Windy City, including a 35-point game on August 29, 2019.
Two other Wings players are also averaging 16+ points against Chicago in their three matchups in 2021, with Allisha Gray (17.7 points/game) and Isabelle Harrison (16.7 points/game) leading the Wings offensive attack. Marina Mabrey also tied her career high dropping 28 points in a win against Chicago on July 2.
The Wings are averaging 87.0 points per game against Chicago this season and the 100 points scored in the July 2nd win against Chicago is a season high for the team in a non-overtime game.
This game will be the first playoff game for Dallas since 2018 and only Marina Mabrey (Los Angeles Sparks), Isabelle Harrison (Phoenix Mercury), Allisha Gray and Kayla Thornton (Dallas Wings) have played in a playoff game.
That's a lot of points...
Arike Ogunbowale became the third quickest player to reach 1,000 career points in WNBA history and then the third fastest player to reach 1,500 at the New York Liberty on 7/5.
On Tuesday, August 17 at Chicago, Ogunbowale became just the fifth player in WNBA history to score double-digits in 60 straight games.
Players that reached 1,500 career points the quickest:
Player Date G
Cynthia Cooper 06/28/1999 66
Seimone Augustus 08/19/2007 68
Arike Ogunbowale 07/05/2021 74
Elena Delle Donne 09/06/2015 75
Breanna Stewart 06/15/2018 78
A'ja Wilson 09/08/2020 78
Cappie Pondexter 07/06/2008 78
LONGEST DOUBLE DIGIT SCORING STREAKS IN WNBA HISTORY:
92 Cynthia Cooper 06/21/1997 06/01/2000
88 Seimone Augustus 06/18/2006 09/07/2008
84 Lauren Jackson 06/26/2002 09/18/2004
83 Sylvia Fowles 05/15/2010 07/07/2012
65 Arike Ogunbowale 07/30/2019 09/07/2021
SWISH AND DISH
Arike Ogunbowale was one of just three players in the WNBA that led her team in both points (599) and assists (104). Ogunbowale has also led the Wings scoring effort in 16 of the team's 32 games and in assists 12 times.
Dallas' roster this year consists of two sets of college teammates. Coincidentally, all of them won championships together during their collegiate careers. Ogunbowale and guard Marina Mabrey became the first college duo on the same WNBA team to both score 25 points in the same game.
Arike Ogunbowale/Marina Mabrey, Notre Dame, '15-'19
Allisha Gray/Tyasha Harris, South Carolina, '16-'17
Drafting Your Cake and Eating it Two
The Wings selected four players in the 2021 WNBA Draft, with three currently on the roster, and became the first team in WNBA history to pick both first and second, taking Charli Collier out of Texas with the number one overall pick and Awak Kuier out of Finland with the second. The Wings also took Chelsea Dungee (Arkansas) fifth overall.
Dallas Wings Head Coach Vickie Johnson played in the inaugural WNBA Game in 1997 as a member of the New York Liberty against the Los Angeles Sparks, defeating them 67 - 57. 25 years later, Johnson, who took the first shot in New York Liberty history, got another shot, leading the Wings to down the Sparks, 94 - 71, the largest margin of victory in Dallas's history to begin a season.
Don't Skimp on the European Connection
Sabally and Kuier continue the rich tradition of European star power in the DFW Metroplex, where German native Dirk Nowitzki earned NBA MVP honors and a championship with the Mavericks, a team whose current roster boasts 2021 NBA All-Star Luka Donèiæ of Serbia.
Gold Medal Lish!
Wings veteran Allisha Gray and Team USA brought home the gold medal in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics 3x3 basketball competition. Gray averaged 5.6 points and 4.8 rebounds to help the team go 8-1 in Japan.
Everything's Bigger in Texas
Dallas Wings center and first overall pick in the 2021 WNBA Draft out of the University of Texas, Charli Collier, recorded a double-double in her first career game at Los Angeles on May 14, netting 11 points to go along with 10 boards. Collier is just the 16th player in WNBA history to record a double-double in her debut and the first since A'ja Wilson (Las Vegas Aces) did so in 2018.
On 5/22 versus Seattle, Isabelle Harrison and Kayla Thornton became the first Wings frontcourt duo to record a double-double in the same game since 2016 (Karima Christmas-Kelly, Glory Johnson). Harrison knocked down seven shots to give her 16 points along with 11 rebounds. Thornton poured in a season-high 14 points and collected a career-high 12 rebounds.
Allisha Gray and Isabelle Harrison both recorded a double-double versus the Atlanta Dream on 9/2. Gray netted 19 points and grabbed a then season-high 10 boards for her first double-double since 2018. Harrison scored 11 points and grabbed 10 rebounds of her own for her third double-double of the season.
TOWERING IN THE FRONTCOURT
As a team, the Dallas Wings finished fourth in the WNBA in rebounding, averaging 36.1 rebounds a game. They also created second-chance points on the offensive side of the ball, as Dallas was the only team in the W to finish in double-digits with 10.0 offensive rebounds per game.
After Coach Vickie Johnson expressed the importance of converting on free throws, the Wings finished fourth in the W in overall free throw percentage (82.9%).
Dallas has relied heavily on shooting the ball from beyond the arc this season. The team finished fourth in made threes, averaging 8.2 per game, and fifth in three point percentage (35.4%). The Wings also made 17 threes against Minnesota on 6/19, the most in franchise history and the most in a single game during the 2021 WNBA season.
Arike Ogunbowale led the W with 80 made three pointers while Marina Mabrey ranked seventh with 63 made threes.
The Wings set the record with the team's 42nd consecutive game with at least five three pointers made vs IND 8/20 on a Marina Mabrey three late in the first quarter.
DAL 08/04/2020 ACTIVE 50
PHO 05/30/2018 07/05/2019 41
PHO 07/18/2006 07/08/2007 33
The Wings were the sixth-highest scoring team in the league averaging 81.1 points per contest. The team is led by star guard Arike Ogunbowale, who ranked fifth in the W, with 18.7 points per game. Four other players on the roster averaged double-digits (Marina Mabrey 13.3, Satou Sabally 11.9, Allisha Gray 11.9 and Isabelle Harrison 10.9).
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